The University of Reading is among the Universities that will be striking during February and March. Some of the dates of the strike have now been released, with nine dates confirmed. Staff will begin striking on February 22. This news will be of concern to students, who will be affected by the ramifications of a strike. The reaction of staff is in response to planned pension changes by Universities UK – which are affecting hundreds of staff across dozens of Universities in the United Kingdom. Read on for the full story.
The University of Reading will be hit by a strike throughout February and March. The strike will begin on Thursday 22nd February, followed by Friday 23rd February. The strike will gather pace the week after, with the 26th, 27th and 28th all being allotted for strike action – meaning the equivalent of a week will be disrupted. As for March, Monday 5th March and Thursday 8th March will affect the first week. The strike will conclude the week after – starting with Monday 12th March and then Friday 16th March.
As mentioned above, this vote was taken in response to planned pension changes by Universities UK. Universities UK are planning on changing the pension scheme, with a recommended change to a model that would see pension income linked to changes in the stock market. This would replace the current model, which provides a guaranteed retirement income. Most see the planned change as a negative step, causing concern for staff. While a strike normally comes as a last resort, it could be necessary.
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This move will put pressure on Universities UK, as will other actions being taken by other Universities that are set to be affected by the planned changes. At a crucial time in the second semester, this news will be very worrying for students, with lectures, assignment grading, mentoring and other academic functions simply ceasing temporarily. The strike is due to start in little over a week, with seemingly little progress being made so far in terms of any solution.